There’s no end to the maze of Westworld mysteries, between humans becoming robots, or Jimmi Simpson becoming Ed Harris, so we wouldn’t begrudge the HBO drama planning more classical fake-outs. As such, a major character whose fate seemingly sealed in Sunday’s “Trace Decay” may not actually be dead, and may not be themselves at all. Wait, what?

You’re warned of full spoilers through the first eight episodes of Westworld from here on out, as well as the current bank of theories still floating around, but “Trace Decay” at last seemed to answer the fate of missing Elsie (Shannon Woodward); last seeing being grabbed from behind in an underground storage facility. However briefly, the now Host-aware Bernard briefly flashed on some other violence Ford had forced him to commit, headlocking Elsie with enough force to lift her from the ground.

Even for TV death, that brief flash wouldn’t seem like enough to permanently shuffle Elsie off the board, let alone in her human form. That said, The Hollywood Reporter spoke with “Trace Decay” director Stephen Williams, who waived the opportunity to confirm Elsie’s death outright, but cryptically suggested we weren’t even looking at Elsie:

Some are taking that as confirmation that Bernard killed Elsie (Shannon Woodward). Is that the right read?

Very nicely done. (Laughs.) Let me refer you to your earlier question about Lost. There’s a form of storytelling that I happen to be somewhat partial to, which embraces the thrill of ambiguity. So I will only say this: I will answer your question with this question. Are we in fact sure that that was Elsie?

Westworld being Westworld, there are any number of ways to interpret that remark. Does Elsie have a twin sister lurking in the bowels of the park? Was Elsie attacked by a host doppelganger of herself, only for Bernard to intervene and strangle Fake-Elsie? Could Bernard’s vision or memory have been altered to remember choking Elsie, when in fact it was someone else?

Only two episodes remains this season, leaving it unclear if Westworld will provide any additional answers on Elsie’s disappearance, but there’s always Season 2! In the meantime, check out the latest trailer below, and #Pray4Elsie.

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